New Vision (Kampala)

Uganda: Local Hotels to Get Global Exposure

AS Uganda's rating as tourism destination goes up, hotels have a chance to tap into a bigger market of world travellers.

This follows teaming up of the world's largest online travel company, Expedia, Inc and Africa's Great Explorations (A.G.E Safaris), an East African tour and travel company.

The two companies are working together to extend the reach of Uganda hotels to millions of travellers worldwide, according to a statement sent to New Vision Online.

"We're excited to give hotels in Uganda the opportunity to expand their business by offering their properties on Expedia's global travel sites, allowing them to attract a new audience of international travellers they otherwise may not have been able to reach," said Diego Lofeudo, the senior director of market management for Expedia in Africa.

"Through our partnership with A.G.E. Safaris, we have formed a local team to help Ugandan hotels effectively offer their properties online on a global scale."

He also pointed out that today when a hotel partners with Expedia, they gain access to nearly 60 million travellers in 70 countries worldwide each month.

Expedia currently works with nearly 149,000 hotels and hundreds of airlines, rental car companies, cruise liners and tour operators in over 200 destinations across the globe.

The US-based firm has operations throughout Europe, the Middle East and Africa, as well as in Asia-Pacific, and South America.

Its team includes hundreds of hotel relationship managers and revenue management specialists based in local markets to assist hotel partners in developing online distribution strategies.

Expedia's local hotel relationship team together with A.G.E Safaris held a summit for Uganda hotels recently at the Serena Conference Centre.

Ugandan hoteliers were exposed to the changing demands because travellers in the western World are more interested in making bookings online without the assistance of travel agents.

Amos Wekesa, the director of Great Lakes Safaris said this was a great opportunity for Ugandan hotels to get business and also market what Uganda offers.

Uganda was declared as the top tourism destination for 2012 by Lonely Planet, a US-based travel magazine.

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